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Over in my mother’s congressional district, the Republican candidate is getting creative:

Republican Van Tran, the upstart challenger to Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-Calif.), is betting on voters sniffing out his opponent’s struggles — literally.

Tran is sending out a scratch-and-sniff direct mail piece attacking Sanchez that features a hideous odor emanating from it….On the inside of mailer, the piece says, “Something smells rotten about Loretta. It’s the stench of Washington.” Below that is the scratch and sniff panel.

A GOP source who experienced the Eau de Sanchez put it this way: “It is a horrible odor, like the combination of the five or six worst possible scents you can imagine.”

Of course, keep in mind that this used to be a district represented by A-list loon Bob Dornan, and this seems like exactly the kind of thing he would have done. It’s good to see that north Orange Country Republicans are keeping the flame alive.

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We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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